Mount Arthur Garlic
Bronte and Darren Adey from Mount Arthur Garlic are recent graduates of the 2015 Sprout Producer’s Program.
Along with five other small Tasmanian producers, this couple commenced their scholarship early this year and have been busy completing a variety of Sprout educational units including soil health, weed management, business planning and finance. To build practical knowledge, they have attended field days and received mentoring from the Sprout board and subcommittee members.
Whilst 2015 has been spent living and breathing farming, it isn’t the first year of Bronte and Darren’s agricultural dream which can be traced back three years when they moved to Tasmania and purchased eight acres of land at the base of Mount Arthur near Lilydale.
Their property consists of soil that is fertile deep loam and has an average rainfall of 1200mm per annum with a cool temperate climate. Determined to make the most of this cool climate, they decided to focus on garlic because it grows well in Tasmania and has an intense flavour due to the long, slow growing season.
Although they have only been farming commercially for 1 year and purposely keep their production area small to focus on quality rather than quantity, they successfully grow four varieties of garlic and are developing areas for globe artichokes, asparagus, berries and heritage apples. They follow organic farming principles to enhance the vitality of the soil and build soil fertility through crop rotation, green manure crops and compost. No chemicals, herbicides or pesticides are used on their farm.
“Being part of the Sprout Producer program has given us the opportunity to learn from and be guided by experts in the field,” said Darren.
Bronte agrees and added “We were allocated mentors who showed us some marketing initiatives that we’d never thought of and helped us define our product niche.”
With their plans to grow the business and employ local Tasmanians underway, they are now looking forward to a future in agritourism, with a farm stay B&B that will also provide a paddock to plate experience for guests.